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Tech4Teachers Program Will Offer Technology and Training to 300,000 NY Educators
- By Mike Hohenbrink
Microsoft, Intel, and the New York State Teacher Centers have unveiled an effort to offer access to low-cost computers and software through the Tech4Teachers Program. The program offers more than 300,000 K-12 teachers in New York a chance to purchase technology products at a discount and provides training and support to help educators use the products.
"The program aims to increase teachers' personal sophistication with technology so that they can more easily incorporate it into the classroom to enhance student learning," according to information released by Microsoft.
The public-private partnership is being rolled out first in New York with Microsoft and Intel looking to expand the idea across the nation. Products offered for discounted purchase will include PCs, laptops, slates, and tablets.
The program also includes:
- An online store with products from both Microsoft and other manufacturers;
- Professional development, training, and free technology tools through Microsoft Partners in Learning and Intel Teach at more than 400 Teacher Centers sites; and
- Program access to any public, private, or pre-service teacher with membership in the Teacher Centers.
"The Teachers Centers will help subsidize the cost of required professional development and technology training for participating teachers to maintain their certification," according to information released by the group.
"Because a teacher's job requires long hours preparing lessons, individualizing instruction, and connecting with parents, having the technology tools they need to complete this work outside the classroom becomes essential," said Sig Behrens, general manager for U.S. Education, Microsoft. "This partnership extends Microsoft's commitment, through our Shape the Future program, to ignite digital access and education tools, not only to students, but also to those who teach them. Technology, brought to bear to support quality teaching and parent engagement, will help to drive positive outcomes for New York's students."
The initiative is an outgrowth of the Shape the Future program, which was made public at the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting. The goal of the program is to bridge the digital divide by helping 1 million students gain access to hardware, software, and broadband Internet service.
More information on Shape the Future is available at microsoft.com.